AVB can succeed at Spurs but only if fans and chairman let him, says countryman Sousa
16:12 GMT, 5 September 2012
Paulo Sousa expects Andre Villas-Boas to be a success at Tottenham – but only if the supporters and chairman Daniel Levy retain faith in his philosophy.
The former Swansea, QPR and Leicester manager is generating success on a tight budget in Hungary, with Videoton, who have qualified for the Europa League and he is proud of the international achievement of Portuguese coaches in the recent years in the trail of Jose Mourinho.
Give him time: Paulo Sousa is confident Andre Villas-Boas can succeed at Spurs
He believes AVB can extend the record of success despite a faltering start at Spurs which has led to jeers from fans and questions from players who are unsure of his methods.
Sousa said: 'It is difficult for anyone to be Tottenham manager after Harry Redknapp. He is very popular in England and at Tottenham, with fans and players and the media.
'Then you're looking for the right profile of players to set out his own football identity and ideas and this takes time. The method of training will be different to what it was under Redknapp.
'If you get positive results it becomes easier, of course, because the convictions will become stronger but there are difficulties at the beginning of each process.
'I'm sure AVB will achieve success at Spurs if he gets time and support. If you identify all Portuguese coaches – not only Andre – our football education, our methods and ideas, will get success.
'In my opinion, January will be a fair time to judge.'
The same is true of Brendan Rodgers, another manager trying to implement fundamental style changes under the pressure of expectation at Liverpool.
'He has not changed as a coach because he moved from Swansea to Liverpool,' said Sousa.
'If his ways have won before, they will win again.
Feeling the heat: Villas-Boas has taken two points from his first three games
'When you sign a particular type of player, he sometimes doesn't suit the football philosophy at his new club and it's a big mistake when you make these decisions.
'One of the most difficult things for Brendan to achieve will be to change the culture of the fans. They are used to football that is different to the football he wants to put on the pitch.
'This is really hard to change at Liverpool. Fans are used to watching very competitive players with importance on block defending and a quick rhythm to the game with lots of action in the box.
'If the fans back him and want to change the way they see the game, they will be satisfied with his work.
'When the club owners took the decision, they knew Brendan's profile as a coach. I'm sure Brendan will be successful and with the understanding of the fans at the start he could be there for 20 years.'
Sousa speaks with experience of knee-jerk reactions from two of the most notorious sackers in the English game.
He survived only five months before he was axed by Flavio Briatore at QPR and four months before Milan Mandaric fired him at Leicester.
Held at home: Spurs could only manage a 1-1 draw with Norwich on Saturday
This season, Chesterfield and Coventry have been quick on the trigger, sacking John Sheridan and Andy Thorn before the end of August.
'Before, being a manager in England was to be allowed time to build on your concepts,' said Sousa.
'It was different to everywhere else but it has started to be more like the other countries.
'For the club to have success, everybody needs to be clear about the project, what they want to achieve when they consider the profile of a manager.
'If you keep changing it is terrible for the club. It is destabilising and it doesn't make economic sense.
Testing times: Brendan Rodgers has also had a slow start to his Liverpool reign
'It is not easy to change culture and football philosophy. You need the desire and strength to change. You are asking the fans, the heart of the club, to accept a different kind of football.
'The process of growing will include negative results and if they're not supportive it is really hard.
'It's easier to start the process in League One or League Two, where you can build and motivate yourself and then arrive in the Premier League with stability like Swansea, where the chairman Huw Jenkins understands the vision.
'It has been a bit easier for Swansea working in Wales than it is for Tottenham or Liverpool.'
Visit Paulo's new website at www.paulosousa.co.uk